Do We Adapt To Our Environments Today?

Julian Steward believed that humans shape their lives, as well as their culture, around what their environment provides them.  I believe, that in present day, that is absolutely true.  Since the industrial revolution began, we began living unsustainably.  We take far more from our Earth than the Earth can regenerate.  We are stripping our planet of it’s natural resources and polluting it with toxic fumes as well as toxic waste.  Our groundwater is polluted, leaving the runoff to enter our oceans, further destroying their ecosystem.  We have slowly destroyed everything we lay our hands on.  However, in this time of destruction and pollution, people are trying to implement new ideas to work with their environment; well, what’s left of their environment.  We are changing the ways we live, because our environment is taking a turn for the worst.

Arizona is a state that is extremely hot and doesn’t get a lot of rain.  Due to the increasing temperatures throughout the year due to climate change, Arizona See the source imageis facing even higher temperatures and an increase in the lack of rain.  This lack of rain calls for residential water restrictions.  Therefore, many residents have converted their yards in a way that compensates for both heat and the lack of rain.  This conversion is known as xeriscaping.  Xeriscaping is a form of landscaping where extra irrigation is not needed.  The plants are native to their ecosystem and are adapted to the hot, dry conditions.  This adaptation saves water and money.

Another adaption technique humankind has invented due to an increase in temperatures is as simple as a white road.  Asphalt get extremely hot in the summer.  Cities, such as Los Angeles, California,  have been experiencing increasing temperatures because of the amount of dark roadways and congested areas.  Therefore, they have begun to paint their road ways white to cut down on urban warming.  Just making the roads white alone provided drastic results.  Some places noticed differences as high as about thirty degrees.  This just goes to show that we are coming up with ways to adapt to our environment.

One last example I’m going to share, is something I personally use everyday.   With the growing plastic problem in our world today, it is important to cut down on your amount of plastic waste.  A compaSee the source imageny called Lush Cosmetics has created a shampoo, conditioner, lotion as well as other items that don’t require a plastic bottle.  I constantly found myself throwing bottle after bottle of shampoo and conSee the source imageditioner away.  Then I found that I could buy this item that didn’t require a bottle and it worked just as well.  They contain all natural, vegan ingredients that you can pronounce (ones that don’t cause cancer, like you find in a lot ofSee the source image products today).  They also don’t test on animals, which is nice because I do not enjoy animal suffering and tears in my products….Some of the options even allow you to cut off the size piece you want as if it’s a piece of food.  The price will then depend upon the weight.  They also provide an option that does have a bottle as well, however, you return the bottles to the store and they reuse them.  So there’s no need to discard the bottles.  Companies are even promoting products that are adapting to our changing environments.

Julian Steward made an interesting point that people’s environments shape the ways they form their ways of life and their culture.  I feel, that today this is absolutely true.  Our environment has taken a turn for the worst.  We are trying to find ways to lessen our footprint as well as adapt and mend our environment.


4 thoughts on “Do We Adapt To Our Environments Today?

  1. I agree with the statement that our environment is shape our life, however is it that the environment shapes our life or is it that our choices to live in that particular environment is what shapes our life. In today’s society we can pretty much live anywhere we want to if we put our mind to it. With that said then how are we allowing the environment to shape our lives if we choose to live there in the first place? Isn’t it then our choices that determine our life and which environment we live in?

    1. Good point, Kate. We’ve created this environmental mess ourselves – we’re not just passively adapting to it. I wonder how Leslie White could apply his analysis of technology to our mess today.

  2. I love the ideas with painting the roads white, have you heard about the solar panel roadways? The idea is that while roadways painted white is good, we can make them reflective and get them to generate power, which would make millions of jobs (to upkeep them) as well as cause some really awesome reductions to the way we burn coal and fossil fuel. Of course, the big problems facing this is funding, because as nice as a solar-powered roadway would be it would be pricey to change all the roads in America to this technology.

  3. I also believe in global warning it has happened before and happening again we are helping to escalate the situation. The asphalt causes the temperatures to rise when it absorbs the heat from the sun and air temperature. I know that there are some people that want to believe that global warming doesn’t exist. They are not looking at all the facts in all the different information and history. We have to look at this situation as a global effect not just a local effect.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: